One of the questions I get asked most frequently as a wedding nears is what couples should be searching for in a getting ready space. Getting ready photos are becoming more and more important to brides. It’s a time of day where the anticipation and excitement build and you’re along for the ride with your closest friends. Most brides invest in cute getting ready outfits and want to make sure these photos will be executed in the most successful way.
The most important part of the answer – FIND A LOCATION WITH LOTS OF NATURAL LIGHT! If you read no further, use this tip as your takeaway.
Here are some additional tips to help nail down the perfect location:
1. LIGHT – As mentioned above, you’ll want to look for a space with lots of windows and great light pouring through them. If you’re getting ready at a hotel, ask beforehand to do a walkthrough of the room / suite options to make sure there’s enough window light in the space. Some hotels even allow you to put in requests for an east-facing room or suite!
2. ON-LOCATION GETTING READY SPACES – Some venues come with a getting ready space included. Sometimes these options are not only super convenient, but beautiful as well! But if getting ready photos are important to you, make sure their space has abundant natural light. Some venues have beautiful bridal rooms, but not all of these rooms have windows. Just be sure to weigh your pros and cons before committing.
3. MAKE SURE THE DÉCOR MATCHES YOUR STYLE – The space you’re considering might have killer natural light, but the walls might be a bright color like yellow, have an odd wallpaper pattern, or have might be dark brick / paint. Also keep an eye at the décor in the room. Make sure it matches your style, whether that’s modern, traditional, rustic, etc. I find the best getting ready photos happen in rooms with modern furniture and light-colored walls. Bonus points for all white!
4. SQUARE FOOTAGE – Make sure there’s enough room for all your people! The room will need to fit you, your mom, all your bridesmaids, your hair and makeup team, and your photographers / videographers PLUS all the bags your bridesmaids will be bringing. If you’re getting ready in a hotel, I highly suggest a hotel suite or adjoining rooms.
5. THINK OUTSIDE THE NORM – If there’s not an obvious answer for your getting ready space, think outside the norm! Rent a cool studio downtown Minneapolis or find a modern Airbnb.
I’ve been lucky enough to shoot at some AWESOME spaces for getting ready photos that anyone can rent out or use. Here are some of my favorites:
L V Studios – This studio is SO unique. The back room has a ton of character with vintage, colorful furniture (think Palm Beach or Anthropologie!), while the front part of the space has abundant natural light and all-white walls. It’s a dream for portraits and makes for a great rain backup if needed! Located in St. Paul, MN.
Studio 125 – Trendy, modern and so spacious! Comes with a kitchen and loads of seating for all your people. Also a great backup for portraits if you have a winter wedding or rainy day! Located in Minneapolis, MN
Harriett Place – It’s girly heaven! The space is so feminine and fun. Also VERY bright, making it the perfect getting ready spot for the ladies. Located in Minneapolis, MN near Lake Harriett.
LAB Studio – All white, lots of windows and fun twinkle lights included. Also great for indoor couple portraits if you have a rainy or cold wedding day! Located in Minneapolis, MN.
Hotel Landing – Modern décor, bright, gorgeous spaces for detail photos. One of my favorite boutique hotels, ever. Located in Wayzata, MN.
Loews Hotel – So many options for suites that are all decorated differently. Modern AND convenient if you decide to do your room block here! Located downtown Minneapolis.
Minneapolis Marriott West – This hotel is more affordable than some of the others mentioned above but is WONDERFUL! Their wedding suites are on a corner so there’s tons of abundant natural light that pours in. They also set it up so the bride and grooms suites connect via a MASSIVE outdoor balcony with lounge furniture. Such a fun bonus for those summer weddings! Located in St. Louis Park, MN.
And last but not least, a list of my favorite Minneapolis / St. Paul venues with amazing built-in getting ready spaces. If you’re getting married at any of these places, skip the hotel and get ready at your venue!
The NP Event Space & Luminary Fern (best getting ready room in all of Minnesota!)
The Capitol Room
3 Ten Event Center